The Standard Hollywood: An Uneasy Pool Party

— by Caroline on Crack

Chris from Modular Records was nice enough to invite me to one of her company’s monthly pool parties at the Standard Hollywood on Saturday. Thing is, that is so not my scene but I figure it’s always good to step outside my comfort zone every once in awhile.

But as soon as I stepped onto the blue patio carpet of this Sunset Strip hip spot, I remembered why I don’t do Hollywood pool parties. I felt like I was a 13-year-old nerdy

girl again, walking into the high school cafeteria past the cliques of cheerleaders and jocks. And then I remembered, “Eh, they’re just people and I’m a 36-year-old nerdy woman.” So my friend Shelley and I decided to try and get more comfortable and order drinks first.

Chris, who was running around making sure the event was running smoothly, came up to us. A cute, little girl with huge Dior sunglasses, she had a voice lower than I had expected and a laidback way about her. I liked her immediately. She brought us a handful of “I Heart NY PC” stickers since the sampler CDs were all gone.

Fortunately, Shelley and I were able to find available patio furniture to sit on and a couple of extra CDs someone else had left behind. (Modular Triple Scoop Summer Sampler with stuff from New Young Pony Club, Muscles and The Bumblebeez.)

I sunk into my white metal chair and sipped on my $11 mojito surveying the scene. Lots of half-dressed toned and tattooed bodies. Some in bathing suits and bikinis, others in rockstar tatters. It looked like a mix of the Sunset Strip in-crowd and the Eastside crew.

Chris sat with us and chatted in between her moments of running around. One of the times she was away, a guy from one of the neighboring tables came up to us asking if he could take Chris’ chair. “No, someone is sitting there.” He then went away. But five minutes later he came back but this time just picked up the chair. I grabbed hold of its leg and said, “No, that’s my friend’s chair.” “No,” he said shaking his head slightly, “It’s been too long already.” WTF?

I then looked him right in his bleary, red eyes, just shocked, expecting him to see that I was earnest in protecting my friend’s chair but he looked right through me. So I said, “You’re an ass. Hole.” A bit surprised with myself but making sure to annunciate clearly and loudly so he understood in his drunken state what I was saying to him. But he didn’t even flinch. As if he already knew he was an asshole and what else is new? So he just took the chair away.

“I wonder if he still would have done that if we were guys?” Shelley asked. “I wonder if he still would have done that if we were really hot girls?” I added. That guy really pissed me off and I couldn’t shake it off. I sat there fuming in my crisp white cotton summer dress on this overcast summer’s day contemplating whether I should throw an ice cube at the back of his head or if I could get away with dumping my mojito on his lap. But since Chris was nice enough to invite me, I didn’t want to embarrass her.

Instead, I glared at the back of his head while a drunken girl in crooked, green sport shorts and Amy Winehouse black ratty hair sat across him and proceeded to drunken make out with him. Classy.

I already felt a tad uncomfortable in this setting and this just drove the point home that I so don’t like this scene.

Chris came back and since there were now no chairs available, she just sat on the table. She’s a lot nicer and easygoing than I am. Eventually the drunken girlfriend left the guy and then he got up and returned the chair to us without a word. “Does that make up for it?” Shelley asked me. “No. He shouldn’t have taken it in the first place,” I replied. But I did stop fuming…a bit.

Does that sorta stuff happen all the time in those settings? How would someone who’s used to that sort of encounter react? With a bad taste in my mouth and tired from the adrenaline of anger, I left. Nearing the end time for the party anyway, things were winding down. The music was good and the crowd interesting to watch, but I was done and so was my mojito.

More pictures of The Standard Hollywood.

The Standard Hotel
8300 W Sunset Boulevard
Los Angeles, California 90069 (map)
(323) 650-9090